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Thursday, 21 November, 2002, 19:01 GMT
Armed police tackle drug gangs
Armed police
Armed police will support police patrols in Haringey
Police on patrol in a north London borough are to be backed up by officers armed with sub-machine guns in an attempt to crack organised crime.

Armed officers will back up patrols in the borough of Haringey, following violent unrest which ended in murder on 11 November.

Up to 50 men began fighting with knives, baseball bats and firearms in the Green Lanes area in a fight police believe is linked to turf wars between drug dealers.

In the wake of the violence in Green Lanes, police have warned that London is on the brink of a violent turf war.


There are many residents here who are afraid to go out, even in the daytime

Green Lanes resident

Haringey's borough commander Steve James told BBC Radio Five Live: "Organised crime is a poison.

"The organised crime in this part of London, we believe, is associated with heroin.

"It has its links more in Turkey than in London and the heroin trade is fuelling other criminal issues taking place on the streets of Haringey."

Crime bosses

He added: "We are providing the reassuring presence of the London bobby on the street, we do have to protect those bobbies so there are armed officers in support of them."

Police on patrol will not carry weapons but will be backed up by armed response units until the violence is resolved.

Turkish-speaking police officers have been sent to the area to help with the investigation.

One woman told BBC Radio Five Live: "There are many residents here who are afraid to go out even in the daytime."


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20 Nov 02 | England
11 Nov 02 | England
29 Aug 02 | Wales
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